Cruisin’…On A Friday Afternoon

Toms River resident Barry Bock brought his vintage 1940 blue Ford Deluxe to the recent Lakehurst Cruise Night held at Horicon Lake. (Photo by Bob Vosseller)

  LAKEHURST – It was postponed due to weather a few weeks earlier but last Friday saw perfect weather for a Cruise Night at Horicon Lake.

  The event went without a hitch and around 20 cars from different eras were on display in the parking lot of the lake.

  Among the car owners who participated in the evening’s event was Toms River resident Barry Bock who owns a blue Ford from the 1940s. “I bought it two years ago. I keep it up. It stays in the garage. I’ve been downtown in the Cruise Night in Toms River and a lot of shows this is my seventh show this year. I always clean it up before I go out.”

  Bock’s vehicle is a Ford Deluxe 40’ Coupe that has jump seats in the back. “They made what they call a business coupe with a little jump seat and the standard coupe had a shelf back there with no seats as salesmen would put their samples back there. The trunk is huge. I put in high test gas and it has historic plates which are special for vintage cars.”

  Councilman James Davis said he was pleased because he was getting some of the car owners to sign up for next year’s Fourth of July Car Show.

  The night’s show had several trophies that were presented toward the end of the evening. “It’s a chance to just gather the community together and see what we can do to have some fun. We have a good backdrop here. This is the first one we’ve done and we are throwing it out there seeing if we can draw a crowd. I thought I’d do a little self-promotion and see who I could gather for the Fourth of July,” Davis said.

  “That was a side benefit for the Car Show Committee and tonight we have five novelty trophies,” Davis added. They included the kid’s choice, people’s choice, who drove the furthest for the show, the oldest car and committee’s choice.

  “I am hoping everyone I send an application to (for the July 2022 car show) plus more show up,” Davis added. “We’ve been missing it. The last one we the car count was 312. It always seems to be the hottest day of the summer.”

A variety of vintage automobiles were on display for Lakehurst’s Cruise Night, a Youth and Recreation event which also served to promote next year’s 4th of July Car Show at Lakehurst Elementary School’s ballfield. (Photo by Bob Vosseller)

  Michelle DiMeo, one of the organizers, said “we used to do the parade in the morning and then set up for the car show but now since we changed to having the fireworks on July 3, we have the parade that day and all of July 4 is the car show.”

  DiMeo noted that last year was the borough’s 100th anniversary “and it was supposed to be a big thing.”

  Davis said “we start Fourth of July now because we have to reach out to vendors, trophy shops, we have to get donations, lock in food trucks. All that stuff was unclear until about a month before Fourth of July (this year) and you had people who laid off their help or had no help and this may still be an uphill challenge next year but my folks have talked about and it is all everyone wants to do.”

  “The last show we did the Lakehurst Historical Society said we broke the record with our car count. It will be held at the field and both sides of Union Avenue and part of Orchid and part of Lake Street,” Davis added. He said the car show has been going on for at least 25 years and involves the LHS.

  Councilman Brian DiMeo said, “we received a lot of responses from the Lakehurst Youth and Rec Facebook page saying ‘oh darn, it is a shame the first one was cancelled, we were looking forward to it, will you reschedule?’ so we figured we’d give it a trial run this year. We hope to do more events like this next year.”

This blue Challenger was among several more modern vehicles present for a recent Cruise Night event held at Lakehurst’s Horicon Lake. (Photo by Bob Vosseller)

  He promoted the October 23 Halloween Parade which begins at 11 a.m. at Borough Hall on Union Avenue with parents and children marching up the street to the lake.

  That event is another long-standing tradition in the borough. “It is a town event but is held through Youth and Rec. We are trying to do an event each month during the nicer weather months. That has been the goal we are shooting for.”

  “Over the summer we had done Nerf wars which had a really good response from the kids. We keep reaching out to the community to get ideas and things they would like to see. As the cooler months come, we’ll be doing the Christmas Tree lighting and we are trying to put together an event beforehand where the kids make environmentally safe Christmas ornaments so kids could put them on the tree.”